The Blog I Didn’t Create

Exercise: “Breaking the Sound Barrier”
Prompt: Write an entire post about something that did not actually happen.

(I know you are getting nervous in case I become an untrustworthy person, with all this “didn’t really happen” bit. But it is a calculated exercise in overcoming my hang-ups. Thank you.)

Once upon a time, I got tired of writing about my real life, because the more people read your words, the less you can write about anyone but yourself, which gets boring after a while. I often wish for anonymity in this space, so I could say anything I want about myself while protecting others, but no. Anyway, I was tired of writing factually, and so I started a fiction blog.

(Note: Are there any? I have never seen one, but that doesn’t mean much.)

I decided to write using the threads of my real life and its characters, but make the small improvements that I—like many other normal people, emphasis on normal—desire of my life, such as creating an identifiable plotline, for example. Adding in more ice cream (a lot more ice cream), but without the calories and the ice crystals and the being out of my favorite flavor. And divinely reversing several events that didn’t go well, such as the time I finally donated the item I had stored unused for years, only to find I needed it the next week. Instead, by a fortuitous happenstance, I wrote about finding the item at a yard sale after wanting it for years, the week before I really needed it.

(Note: I know you are wondering what that thing could be. I can tell you in one word. Contraception. Yard sales are my favorite place to find it.)

Okay, this post is getting more fictious all the time.

The thing I actually wanted for years was a Belgian waffle maker, and the reason I will “really need” it next week is still emerging, but I feel the time ticking down to the moment when I absolutely must have a warm and toasty, triple-depth waffle laced with creamy peanut butter and maple syrup. That’s why. On my fiction blog, I write about things like this, delicious puffy things of no importance.

And also, I mix tenses. Which parts are past and present and yet to come? No matter. Waffles are always in season.

Once I wrote about the children I would have had, if the yard sale contraception had been less (or more) effective. They turned out completely different than I expected. I wrote about the adventures of my feet, the extraordinary things they have gotten into over the years: one post a day for three weeks and still not done yet. Sometime soon, I will write about Dutch babies, the puffed and joyful German pancakes that never turn out the same twice (DNA is so weird like that), and I will make them turn out to have personalities and chat fests in the hot pan as they rise.

Fiction is fun. I am working on a real work of fiction, for the first time. Or I was, last summer when I had a regular babysitter once a week, and a few precious hours of quiet time. Now you do not know if this is true or not, right? But it is, in fact, the only part of this post that is real.

Are you foolish to believe me, or foolish not to believe me?

You are never foolish though.

This is why a fiction blog doesn’t work. It’s layers of truths within untruths and vice versa, for a bit of fluff at the end, and everyone insisting on knowing which is which. I have chosen to write something truly confusing and nonsensical to overcome my fear that someday I will. I can’t write ALL true, because I am not all-seeing. I can’t write ALL untrue, because I am real, you see, even if my stories are not.

Sometimes, writing fact is more difficult than you might think. It requires the hard work of sifting and sorting, positioning oneself at various angles to ensure a good brave look at things with no avoidance. But not overexplaining. Fiction is hard work too, because it carries truth within it: needing always to hold enough and never too much. And being always believable.

I expect to get a lot of letters about this post. The answers to your burning questions are “yes, no, and yes,” respectively.

And your burning questions, for the sake of clarification, are:

“Do you really buy contraception at yard sales? Do you truly want a Belgian waffle maker? And most importantly, are the rumors true that you are actually short on time to write?”

(Note: You must learn to phrase your questions more succinctly. All this “really/truly/actually” gambit is unnecessary.)

Oops, I switched the order of the first two questions. Apologies.

No further questions.

What is something that did not happen to you this week? Any wonderful yard sale finds?

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18 days ago

You are clever, and funny. And inscrutable.

And you were humble, but look what I just did. Sorry Shari sorry.

I don’t shop at yard sales, which is why I have 7 kids.

Shari Zook
18 days ago
Reply to  Not The Boss

Oh my stars.

18 days ago
Reply to  Shari Zook

That is So Funny, thanks for the laughs, I got a pregnancy test at a dent n bent store… it did not have directions on how to use it…. 😂😂😂

Martha Byler
18 days ago

I did not crash the car, even though I was … um yes, speeding! There was no law officer behind me 😏. I had to speed to get to that yard sale first, right? To get that STUFF! No wait… I’m way past fertility stage. But not intimacy 😊.

18 days ago

😆 thank you, Shari, for the laughs!

This week I turned 40 and on my birthday I woke refreshed at dawn to the realization that I have got a handle on my life. Found a groove and have been groovin’ along for a solid decade, at least. I got this! It’s a great feeling.

Also this week, today, right now I discovered that I am like G. Washington and cannot lie worth a flip. How does one make it believable? Or at the very least confusing?

18 days ago
Reply to  Rachel

Happy birthday Rachel (or is this answering Shari’s question of What didn’t happen this week?)

Osiah Horst
17 days ago
Reply to  Shari Zook

I am WAY too near my 80th birthday to believe that by that time all will be well and in the groove. MY 76 year old friend wished that he would not get a case of long shingles because the short version was too hard. Well, he actually ended up in the “groove” and now all is well for him with, no more shingles, but his widow does not think that all is well.

17 days ago
Reply to  Osiah Horst

Whoa, Osiah. Will I ever think of “in the groove” the same again?

18 days ago

I did not feel a 20 week fetus moving inside me, thanks to yard sales. But I thought I did which was scary enough to be for real. Perhaps I ate too much waffle one night….

18 days ago

Oh Shari I liked this post. What didn’t happen was I didn’t buy any yarn. Even though I drooled over crochet projects on YouTube some of the ladies made and wanted to buy yarn to make it.😍

18 days ago

Oh I forgot to mention, no yard sales because my fertility is gone at 63 years of age.

18 days ago

I Love this post. I can’t even make myself write my circle letter to my fellow classmates who have all moved to different parts of the country. I can’t decide how much to talk about all our various intricacies.
…And now I have deleted the rest of my answer bc I know too many people who read your blog and the comments section.

Not many yard sales in the Appalachian Mountains…

But true story I know more about RAD than I ever wished to know. And we might even get to go help at the camps… If only my 21 yo self could have seen what all being a help- meet would entail. 🤣

Sylvia Horst
18 days ago

Today, I didn’t get my homework all finished! But I did a substantial portion of it and hope that God will make the words flow quickly and smoothly when I get another chance to study…for a lot needs to happen between now and Saturday night at midnight!

Perhaps my only question for you is whether these prompts to get you writing again are actually assignments for your Lancaster Bible College homework. And that is being too nosy, so never mind! Perhaps you are no longer even studying at LBC.

Shari Zook
14 days ago
Reply to  Sylvia Horst

I’m still at LBC! Just on summer break, since I’ll only be doing fall and spring semesters. I love it. And no, the prompts are my own concoction to get myself talking in this space again. 🙂

15 days ago

This is priceless! 😂😂

15 days ago

Quite enjoyable reading. What happened this week was that I got an antibiotic in preparation for pulling a wisdom tooth. Like the good girl I am, I have since avoided sugar, and have upped my intake of yogurt and other probiotic Rich foods. 😉😉

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